Wärtsilä, working with Knutsen OAS Shipping, Repsol and the Sustainable Energy Catapult Centre, will commence the first long-term, full-scale testing of ammonia as a fuel in a marine four-stroke engine as part of Norway’s DEMO 2000 programme
Wärtsilä Marine general manager for market innovation at business Egil Hystad said “We are really excited to further develop and understand the combustion properties of ammonia as a carbon-free fuel in one of our multi-fuel engines.
“Ammonia storage and supply systems will be designed and developed for maximum personal safety, in parallel with the fuel gas handling system under development as part of the EU project ShipFC. This project is co-ordinated by NCE Maritime CleanTech, and involves an ammonia-driven fuel cell which will be tested on the Eidesvik Offshore supply vessel Viking Energy.”
Wärtsilä studies the use of ammonia as a future carbon-free fuel through the ZEEDS initiative and in March the company commenced its first ammonia combustion tests in Vaasa, Finland. The company will continue long-term testing at the Sustainable Energy Catapult Centre facilities in Stord, Norway.
Norway’s Minister of Petroleum and Energy Tina Bru said “This is a great example that illustrates the importance of dedicated petroleum R&D. This DEMO 2000 project is another stepping stone for reaching our ambitious climate targets and it is also aligned with our recently published hydrogen strategy. We need to develop and use new technologies that reduce emissions. We are very happy to support development work that can lead to increased use of ammonia as a fuel in shipping and in the offshore sector. Know-how from this project will also provide important input to the development of regulations for the use of ammonia and other low-carbon fuels.”
Ammonia is seen as a viable carbon-free alternative fuel for marine applications in view of the maritime industry’s need to rapidly decarbonise to meet IMO’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by significant amounts by 2050. Wärtsilä expects that a full-scale fuel testing programme can lead the way for ammonia engines to be used in business operations within few years.
Sustainable Energy Catapult Centre is part of the Norwegian Catapult programme that facilitates a national infrastructure for innovation. The programme is run by Industrial Development Corporation of Norway in close co-operation with Innovation Norway and the Norwegian Research Council and financed by the Norwegian Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries. The testing is made possible by a Nkr20M (US$2M) grant from the Norwegian Research Council through the DEMO 2000 programme.
The project will commence testing in the Sustainable Energy Catapult Centre’s testing facilities at Stord, Norway during Q1 2021.
Riviera held a webinar discussing using ammonia as a fuel on 1 July. Watch the webinar here